We thought it made good sense instead of doing that today when undoubtedly stores everywhere will surely be packed with last-minute Christmas shoppers.
So into Tesco Reading we go last night, and what a sorry experience it was.
The place was packed. Car park almost full and with one large remote area without lighting. It seemed as if the whole of Berkshire was in the store.
Imagine: a packed supermarket, not that many visible store staff around other than the shelf stackers with their enormous cages blocking some aisles, and a general air of chaos.
This supermarket has 35 checkouts, yet I could see only 10 actually open when we got to the checkout line.
Some kind of law of averages, I suppose: the more people queuing for the checkout, the less checkouts there are that are open. More like Murphyâ€™s Law.
So we joined a queue, which took 25 minutes before we reached the actual checkout operator (a stalwart young lady with good people skills and a terrific sense of humour).
All was not wasted in the queue, though â€“ to while away the time, I started twittering with my online buddies :)
As I was keeping up a flow of Twitter reporting from the Tesco front line, a request came from Podnosh:
Can you perhaps make a podcast whilst you’re waiting to pay?
The demeanour of most surrounding me in the queue for the checkout didnâ€™t seem conducive to some vox pop-style interviews, so I settled for a quick commentary.
You can listen to or download the MP3 here (0.7Mb, 1:40).
Impressive audio quality, donâ€™t you think? After converting the native iTalk AIFF recording to WAV, the only editing Iâ€™ve done to is run that file through The Levelator and then output that file to MP3.
I wouldnâ€™t plan to use this for general out-and-about recording for podcasts (for that, Iâ€™ll stick with my Microtrack 24/96), although for casual short recordings such as the one I did at Tesco, itâ€™s pretty good.
The Griffin iTalk app is free, available from the iTunes App Store (thereâ€™s also the iTalk Premium at $4.99, which is ad free). Recording audio is a breeze â€“ run the app, click the big on-screen button, talk, click the button again to stop. Dead simple.
To make use of your recording (such as Iâ€™ve done as a podcast), you need to get the audio file onto your computer. For that, you need the free iTalk Sync (versions for PC and Mac) which your run on your computer that connects to your iPhone via your wifi connection and lets you copy over your files.
Once you have the audio file on your computer, you can then do whatever you want with it. A neat and enjoyable experience.
Which is more than I can say about Tesco in Reading last night.